Time Out For Me Youth Development (TOFMYD) of Portsmouth, departed Tuesday on a historical journey to The Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture Center in Washington D.C.
The Smithsonian NMAAHC, which opened to the public Sept. 24, 2016, contains 36,000 artifacts related to African American history, and is located on the National Mall in the nation’s Capital. Founder of TOFMYD, Marcia Harris said she is elated about hosting the NMAAHC trip for the youth, and is hopeful the experience will enable them to gain new insight.
“We are so, so inspired and happy for the opportunity to be able to take our youth to Washington D.C. to the Museum of African American History,” Harris said. “This means so much, and what we hope is that the youth are inspired, that they don’t take us for granted, and that they look at education in a different light.”
Adult chaperones who accompanied Harris include Maureen Cadogan, Drew Carter, Gary Hairston, Marilyn Hairston, Corey Johnson, and Phil McCartis, all of Portsmouth.
Cadogan said they raised $6,000 in a just two weeks to bring the trip into fruition.
“I think this is an awesome opportunity for our youth to see where they come from,” Cadogan said. “We want the youth to understand that they stand on the shoulders of greatness. With all of the things that they are seeing now, they need to understand who they are, and where they come from. It was wonderful when Marcia came to me and said she desired to take the youth to the African American Museum, and she said she needed tickets. I asked her how many she needed, and in two weeks we got the tickets and raised $6,000 to make this trip happen, for the hotel and all of the expenses associated with it. It was a God thing, and when something is meant to happen God will work it out.”
Carter who participated in the trip as an adult chaperone, was once an active member of TOFMYD.
“It is a blessing to be a part of this youth group. Seeing that when I was young I used to be a part of Miss Marcia’s group when I was their age,” Carter said. “So, it is nice that I am in a position to be able to give back to my community. We love Miss Marcia. She has done a lot for this community. I am just blessed, and I am just fortunate to be able to help out.”
The group departed Tuesday, Nov. 8, and is scheduled to return Friday morning on Nov. 10.
Reach Portia Williams at 740-464-3862, or on Twitter @PortiaWillPDT.